Police in Upper Macungie Township, Pa., northwest of Philadelphia, shot a snake to death in order to save a 28-year-old man it was strangling Wednesday afternoon in Fogelsville. The man was unresponsive and lying on the floor. He was in cardiac arrest with a snake wrapped around his neck. The snake was shot in its head. Police estimated the snake was at least 15 feet long. It was a pet snake. “Because the snake was so large, the midsection of the snake was wrapped around the throat. The head of the snake was just far enough away from the victim that the officer made a split-second decision and he proceeded to shoot the snake in the head,” said Lt. Peter Nickischer with the Upper Macungie Township Police Department. The man was still alive when emergency responders rushed him to to the Lehigh Valley Hospital.
Police aren’t sure what kind of snake it was. Police had no further information immediately available on the man’s condition. “I’ve been doing this job for 19 years and this is the first time I’ve seen anything like this,” Lieutenant Peter Nickischer said. Several other snake enclosures were found inside the home. Ownership of non-native reptiles and amphibians is not regulated by the state, according to the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission.